Sir Bob Murray

Welcome to the official website of Sir Bob Murray CBE.

This is the life of a prolific businessman and philanthropist with an enduring passion for education and football. Sir Bob’s achievements and successes are attributed to a firm belief in a strong work ethic, based on lifelong learning and education and aided by drive, determination and a not insignificant amount of good luck!

“I’ve enjoyed creating buildings, businesses and relationships. I rarely do things alone and take strength from working in partnership with great people. Having a good reputation and being trusted is important and I believe in approaching everything I do with sincerity and integrity.”

Using the interactive timeline below, explore key points in his business and football career and milestones throughout his life from early childhood to the present day. You can search by business, football or milestones, using key words in the search box or by clicking on dates on the timeline.

Sir Bob Murray

Explore Timeline

2015

September 2015

  1. Beacon of Light illuminated at night

    BEACON GREEN LIGHT

    “It’s been  a great week for the Foundation of Light as the BEACON OF LIGHT passed an important milestone when it secured full planning approval from Sunderland City Council.   “The Beacon will be a…

    Read More

    “It’s been  a great week for the Foundation of Light as the BEACON OF LIGHT passed an important milestone when it secured full planning approval from Sunderland City Council.

     

    “The Beacon will be a game-changer for the Foundation and catalyst for so much that we want to achieve in the next decade. The charity already works with more than 40,000 people every year, and the Beacon will significantly expand our work and the number of lives we can touch.

    “I have always been a passionate advocate of the power of education to change lives and the power of football to inspire and motivate people. The Beacon will epitomise this vision and fuse together sport, education, the world of work and health and well-being like no other place in the UK.

    The Beacon received more good news when the Home and Communities Agency (HCA) also confirmed the land transaction has been approved in principle with heads of terms being exchanged. The HCA has worked closely with the Foundation over the last year to bring about the land deal for the unique development.

    “We are immensely grateful to the Home and Communities Agency for their visionary approach and support for the Beacon of Light development. The landmark development will make a real difference to the lives of thousands of people and the Home and Communities Agency demonstrated a real enthusiasm and keenness to invest in the city from the outset. I would like to thank them for going the extra mile and showing great commitment to the project. Like us, they want to see the Beacon of Light become a reality.

    Contractors for the new development have now been shortlisted and tender documents issued. It is envisaged that work on the Beacon will start in spring 2016,

    The £16.5m striking cube-shaped development, designed by leading architecture practice FaulknerBrowns, will be the first building of its kind in the UK and house education and training facilities with an indoor football pitch above.

    “The Beacon will give us an important platform to expand our pioneering programmes and to extend our work into exciting new areas. We are thrilled that our vision is one step closer. The Beacon is attracting a lot of attention and we’re delighted so many individuals and organisations are keen to get involved,” added Lesley Spuhler, CEO of the Foundation.

    The award winning Foundation of Light was established in 2001 and uses the power of football to educate, inspire and motivate. One of the largest and leading sports charities in the UK, it has an excellent track record of working with children, young people and their families.

     

    Perspective Section Sports Hall

    Print Ready Version

August 2015

  1. Sir Bob Murray, Chancellor of Leeds Beckett University

    Important day for students at Leeds Beckett

    I studied in Leeds myself and it is a fantastic student city. I wish all future Leeds Beckett students the best of luck with their studies and future careers. The Leeds Beckett team are available…

    Read More

    Sir Bob Murray at Leeds Beckett



    I studied in Leeds myself and it is a fantastic student city. I wish all future Leeds Beckett students the best of luck with their studies and future careers.

    The Leeds Beckett team are available to help anyone wanting to have a chat about their options – call them on 0113 812 3113.

    Print Ready Version

July 2015

  1. Honour for Restoration Man

    It was a great pleasure for me to personally present my good friend and fellow Foundation of Light advocate George Clarke with another honour this week. Architect, writer, lecturer and TV presenter George Clarke  received…

    Read More

    It was a great pleasure for me to personally present my good friend and fellow Foundation of Light advocate George Clarke with another honour this week.

    Architect, writer, lecturer and TV presenter George Clarke  received an Honorary Doctorate from Leeds Beckett University for his contribution to the Arts.

    Speaking about his award, George, best known for presenting Channel’s 4’s Restoration Man said: “It’s a huge honour to receive the honorary doctorate today.

    I’m thrilled to bits and can’t quite believe it. To be sharing the day with so many other graduates is great. It’s actually 20 years nearly to the day that I got my

    first degree so I feel like I’m going back in time today.”

     

    http://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/news/0715-restoration-man-presenter-receives-honorary-degree/

    Print Ready Version
  1. SIRBOB_SCHOLARS2

    Leeds Beckett scholarships 2015

    I was delighted to visit campus recently to award this year’s Sir Bob Murray scholarships to five very deserving first year Leeds Beckett students who are just starting their studies. After I became Chancellor of…

    Read More

    Leeds Beckett Scholars 2015

    I was delighted to visit campus recently to award this year’s Sir Bob Murray scholarships to five very deserving first year Leeds Beckett students who are just starting their studies.

    After I became Chancellor of Leeds Beckett University in 2013, I pledged to give £30,000 to students over six years to help those that need a bit of extra support to achieve their goals.

    This year, Billy Haigh, Louise Wade, Saeed Muthana, Jugraj Singh Bhadal and Jamie Howarth received the scholarship award to help support their studies.

    Congratulations to them all!

    It is very rewarding for me to be able to give something back to my university by supporting these hard working, talented students.

    I hope the scholarships will make a real difference to them and I wish them every success in their studies.

    Print Ready Version
  1. Sir Bob Congratulates Graduates of 2015

        It was a busy week for Sir Bob with 10 packed ceremonies at  Leeds Beckett for the 2015 Graduations. He offered his congratulations to all graduating students, “My role as Chancellor at Leeds…

    Read More

     

     

    It was a busy week for Sir Bob with 10 packed ceremonies at  Leeds Beckett for the 2015 Graduations.

    He offered his congratulations to all graduating students, “My role as Chancellor at Leeds Beckett is an honour and privilege. Nothing brings home to me the transformative impact of education so much as seeing the achievement of our graduating students.

     

    “Once again I spent much of the week at Headingley Campus celebrating with colleagues and students. This year we awarded a number of honorary degrees to people from a range of sectors and backgrounds and I’m confident that the conferment of these awards this summer have not only laid the foundations for a lasting relationship with our University but, through telling their own stories in their speeches, our honorary graduates have also inspired another cohort of our hopeful graduates.

     

    “Great results are down to hard work, steadfast determination, resilience and often a little luck. I trust that all this week’s graduates will take time to really savour and capture this moment.  Whatever they choose to do next, they can do it in the knowledge that they are setting off – or continuing – on their careers with a great education behind them.”

     

    http://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/

    Print Ready Version

January 2015

  1. Lesley Spuhler, CEO of Foundation of Light and Sir Bob Murray on the site of the Beacon.

    Beacon will be a powerful educator

    THE Foundation of Light and the Premier League recently teamed up to tell Ministers and MPs about their pioneering work in the community and to launch ambitious plans for the Beacon of Light. Baroness Jay…

    Read More

    THE Foundation of Light and the Premier League recently teamed up to tell Ministers and MPs about their pioneering work in the community and to launch ambitious plans for the Beacon of Light.

    Baroness Jay of Paddington who sponsored the event in the House of Lords with Sunderland MP Julie Elliot, outlined some of the ground-breaking work being undertaken in the north east

    by the Foundation of Light – the charity arm of SAFC, which was set up by Sir Bob in 2001.

    She said: “The Beacon of Light will be an inspirational, multi-functional Centre of Opportunity – bringing people, communities and agencies together to make an outstanding and long lasting difference to people’s lives.”

    Baroness Jay also revealed that the Beacon of Light development has the potential to generate an estimated social return on investment of more than £73 million within the next 20 years.

    Lesley Spuhler, CEO of Foundation of Light and Sir Bob Murray on the site of the Beacon.

    The £15m development, which will be operated by the Foundation of Light, will expand the award-winning work of the charity using the power of football and sport to engage people in activities designed to improve their lives,

    and the lives of those around them.

    Sir Bob explained; “The Beacon will be a vibrant and exciting education, skills and sports facility and will address local issues through four  innovative zones of sport and play, world of work, health and well-being and education – given Sunderland as a city is behind national figures in all of these areas. The Beacon will be operated as a social enterprise to ensure it is both sustainable and self-sufficient – not a constant ask but, once constructed, a constant give.”

    Julie Elliot MP added: “Despite the ground-breaking efforts of the Foundation of Light and various local agencies, Sunderland is still an area with its challenges. The Beacon of Light will empower people to take responsibility for their own choices and actions and encourage people to learn more, do more and be more. It will allow them to change their world and that of their families and neighbours – a succession of steady and gradual changes that will echo the story of social and economic regeneration in the North East.”

     

    Print Ready Version
2014

September 2014

  1. Picture by Vicky Matthers iconphotomedia

    Proud to be Chancellor of Leeds Beckett

      I am proud to be the Chancellor of Leeds Beckett University, which changes its name from Leeds Metropolitan University today. Congratulations to all at the University who have made this important milestone possible. I…

    Read More

     

    I am proud to be the Chancellor of Leeds Beckett University, which changes its name from Leeds Metropolitan University today.

    Congratulations to all at the University who have made this important milestone possible. I know that a lot of work from many colleagues has gone into making this step forward.

    The university has changed its name in order to be more distinctive and has also launched its new strapline; Leeds Beckett University: Opening Minds, Opening Doors.

    In business, and when leading any large organisation, those who lead it need to make big decisions. It’s so important to be bold in the decisions you take and stick to what you believe in. I know this myself from personal experience when Sunderland AFC moved from Roker Park to the Stadium of Light. The fans were not always 100% behind the changes but very quickly after the move the majority realised it was the right decision for the club in the long term.

    There may still be people who aren’t fully signed up to Leeds Beckett yet, but I’m sure in time they will be, when they realise what a positive and important strategic step it is for the university.

    Many congratulations to Leeds Beckett University on this exciting day – I look forward to many more years as Chancellor of this great institution.

    Read more here: http://www.yorkshirepost.co.uk/news/debate/columnists/bob-murray-proud-to-lead-university-into-new-era-1-6853614

    Print Ready Version

April 2014

  1. Chester-le-Street annual dinner

    Sir Bob enjoyed a wonderful evening at the annual sporting dinner held by the Chester-le-Street branch of the Sunderland Supporters’ Association. The dinner was organised by fans and attended by many red-and-white supporters as well…

    Read More

    Sir Bob enjoyed a wonderful evening at the annual sporting dinner held by the Chester-le-Street branch of the Sunderland Supporters’ Association.

    The dinner was organised by fans and attended by many red-and-white supporters as well as representatives from the club.

    Sir Bob said: “I had a fantastic evening and it was great to catch up with so many people, including former Sunderland manager Denis Smith.

    “The atmosphere was great and we were all chatting about the match at Manchester City from the previous night. Many of us were all still reeling from their late goal which cost us the game!”

    Click below to read Sunderland Echo Sport Writer Graeme Anderson’s review of the evening.

    Chester le Street Dinner

    Print Ready Version

March 2014

  1. Sir Bob at Wembley before the Capital One Cup Final

    Sir Bob’s Cup Final Review

        “It was fantastic to be a Sunderland supporter at Wembley. I felt really proud of the team and how they played and of the fans. The atmosphere was electric and you could see…

    Read More

     

    Sir Bob at Wembley before the Capital One Cup Final

     

    “It was fantastic to be a Sunderland supporter at Wembley. I felt really proud of the team and how they played and of the fans. The atmosphere was electric and you could see what it meant to every SAFC fan to be there. Everyone around me said they’d never heard a roar like it when Sunderland scored.

    “ I thought Gus got it right too in terms of selection, subs and tactics. It was a big occasion and he and the team did us all proud.

    “I’ve always really loved Manchester City as a club. They are a big community club like Sunderland and the fans have backed their club in good and bad times, despite living in the shadow of Manchester United for many years.

    “They know what it’s like to have ups and downs and not so long ago had to endure lower divisions. But, I don’t think we were beaten by that Manchester City on Sunday, the thing that separated us was money.

    “I really hope all the players and the fans can take all the pride and positives from the game and it lifts everyone for the rest of the season.”

    Print Ready Version

February 2014

  1. Sir Bob’s Cup Final Countdown

      Sir Bob chatted to The Journal’s sports writer Stuart Rayner about the highs and lows of being a Sunderland supporter and reflected on Sunderland’s history at Wembley. Click the links below to read the…

    Read More

     

    Sir Bob at Wembley

    Sir Bob chatted to The Journal’s sports writer Stuart Rayner about the highs and lows of being a Sunderland supporter and reflected on Sunderland’s history at Wembley.

    Click the links below to read the article.

    The Ballad of the Black Cats and Wembley finals 1

    The Ballad of the Black Cats and Wembley finals 2

     

     

    Print Ready Version